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SCSU notebook: Chase Brand is out with another injury, the lineup shuffle, coach pulling for Mason Salquist

Senior wing will miss this weekend's series against Denver.

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St. Cloud State forward Chase Brand (27) is checked into the boards by Colorado College defenseman Nicklas Andrews (37) in the first period Friday, Jan. 13, 2023, at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center in St. Cloud.
Jason Wachter / The Rink Live

ST. CLOUD, Minn. — Chase Brand has had a tough time staying healthy this season.

The senior wing from Nevis, Minn., is going to be out this weekend with a lower body injury suffered in a game Friday against Colorado College.

"He's going to be week-to-week," Huskies head coach Brett Larson said on Tuesday.

Brand missed a series Nov. 18-19 at Colorado College after taking contact to the head in back-to-back series. He missed a series Oct. 14-15 at Wisconsin after suffering a wrist injury.

Brand has two goals, four assists, is a plus-4, has 14 shots and blocked four in 17 games this season. He's averaging 12 minutes, 13 seconds of ice time per game and is one of the Huskies' penalty killers.

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On Friday, Brand played right wing on a line with sophomore center Mason Salquist and freshman left wing Adam Ingram.

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St. Cloud State forward Mason Salquist (16) joins St. Cloud State forward Chase Brand (27) and Minnesota Duluth defenseman Owen Gallatin (20) in a battle for the puck during the third period Tuesday, Feb. 22, 2022, at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center in St. Cloud.
Jason Wachter / The Rink Live

Lineup shuffle

A combo platter changed up the lines for Saturday's game, which the Huskies won, 4-0.

With Brand out of the lineup, freshman Jack Rogers played right wing on a line with graduate student center Aidan Spellacy and freshman left wing Ryan Rosborough.

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Junior wing Veeti Miettinen, a Toronto Maple Leafs draft pick, had not had a point in four straight games. Miettinen, who has played the bulk of his career on left wing on a line with center Jami Krannila and right wing Zach Okabe, got moved to right wing on a line with Salquist and Ingram.

Junior Joe Molenaar had been playing right wing on a line with Spelllacy and Rosborough. Saturday, Molenaar moved up to left wing on a line with Krannila and Okabe. Molenaar had an assist on Okabe's goal and both Krannila and Okabe finished with a goal and an assist in the 4-0 win.

"Molenaar jumped in and did a great job on that line," Larson said. "We needed to get them going a little bit. They scored a nice faceoff goal where Moley made a nice play to get the puck to the middle, Oks got to the grease pan and scored it.

"Rogers did a nice job coming in and Spelly's line played the same way — hard, physical, got our ground game going and were effective. And I did like Salzy, Veeti and Ingy (together). They created some really good chances. That line has the potential to get some offense for us."

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Pulling for Salquist

On Saturday, Larson found himself doing some cheering from the bench for one of his players. Salquist, a sophomore from Grand Forks, was playing in his 21st game of the season and does not have a goal or an assist.

"Very late in the game — maybe a minute-and-a-half left — he had a chance around the net," Larson said. "I didn't realize I said this, but I said, 'Go in Salzy. I want you to get a point.' He's out there and he can't hear me.

"Okabe turned around and said, 'Coach, honestly, he doesn't care.' That's the type of kid he is. He's willing to do whatever he can to help this team win. He's not focused on himself at all. I think that's a great example of our culture around here."

Salquist is averaging 14:43 per game, is winning 51.3% of his faceoffs, has 25 shots and is a penalty killer for the Huskies. He's also had some stretches on the power play.

Mick Hatten is a reporter and editor for Forum News Service and helps manage TheRinkLive.com, a website dedicated to hockey. He began working for Forum Communications in November 2018 and has covered St. Cloud State University hockey since 2010. A graduate of St. Cloud State, he has more than 30 years of experience as a journalist and has been a youth hockey coach since 2014. mhatten@forumcomm.com
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